A darkly funny and heartfelt debut novel about what it means to grow up young and black on the south side of Chicago when it feels like your choices are slim to none.
Set in the epicenter of American racial politics, this novel follows Claude McKay Love, a young black man who feels stuck in a constant search for a place where he would fit. Born on the south side of Chicago, he is abandoned by his parents and raised by his civil rights-era grandmother, who tries to shape him into a principled actor for change. On maturity’s cusp, Claude hopes to escape the issues of race by leaving Chicago for college. But as he discovers, those same issues follow him to Missouri, where he finally understands that that there is no safe haven for a young black man. Written in a fierce original voice, Everywhere You Don’t Belong marks the arrival of a brilliant young talent.